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APLU Honors Three Institutions for International Impact

Seattle, WA – In recognition of its extraordinary global learning, research, and engagement efforts, the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) today named the University of Kentucky, University of South Florida, and The University of Texas at San Antonio as winners of its international impact awards.

“Congratulations to the winners of the APLU International Impact Awards,” said APLU President Mark Becker. “Public research universities are major drivers of progress through their global engagement, research, and teaching and we’re delighted to recognize institutions that have excelled in global engagement in these areas.”

The awards recognize results in three categories across the institution:

  • Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity—how the institution empowers all stakeholders in its internationalization efforts;
  • Institutional Commitment—how the institution’s leadership (at the president/chancellor or provost level) is committed to Global Engagement, Global Research, or Global Teaching and Learning, and how they make it a priority for the institution;
  • Assessment—how the institution measures participation and impact.

Background on the award winners:

University of Kentucky
The University of Kentucky won the APLU International Impact Award for Global Engagement, which recognizes a high degree of global engagement on their campus, in their community, and/or with international partners. The University of Kentucky’s inter-professional Shoulder to Shoulder Global (STSG) global health program delivers healthcare to underserved populations in Santo Domingo, Ecuador. Over the past 16 years STSG has provided over 100,000 medical visits and 25,000 dental consultations for more than 23,000 patients, while also providing inter-professional experiential learning for 1,300 students, faculty, staff, and community members. STSG partners with other U.S. universities and organizations and with Ecuadorean universities and community groups. The University of Kentucky’s Refugee Student Initiative is an innovative partnership across administrative units, state government agencies, and international and local NGOs to provide access to higher education for refugees and displaced persons. The University of Kentucky has welcomed and supported 21 refugee students through this initiative.

University of South Florida
The University of South Florida (USF) is the recipient of the APLU International Impact Award for Global Teaching and Learning, which recognizes innovative and impactful efforts to increase global learning on campus and with partners. USF is committed to making global education accessible to all students throughout their academic careers. The “Global Classroom Initiative,” a university-wide endeavor, has significantly increased students and faculty participation in global learning activities including: traditional study abroad experiences, virtual global exchanges and internships, virtual-to-mobility programs, the intentional inclusion of global themes and content into the undergraduate curricula, as well as student-led global teaching and learning opportunities. USF’s approach prioritizes inclusivity and accessibility by the university’s diverse student population.

The University of Texas at San Antonio
The University of Texas at San Antonio won the APLU International Impact Award for Global Research, which recognizes innovative and impactful efforts to advance global research on campus and with partners. ConTex – a critical UT System initiative with Mexico’s National Council of Humanities, Sciences, and Technologies (Conahcyt), and hosted at UTSA – has led to increased binational scholarship, strengthened the pipeline for research-related careers, increased the success of doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows, and supported faculty as they achieved national and international research recognitions. Established in 2016, ConTex supports bilateral efforts to enhance academic and research collaborations between Texas and Mexico. The ConTex Collaborative Research Grants program provides funding of up to $100,000 USD for a twelve-month period for binational collaborative teams of scholars working together on a project that is mutually beneficial and impactful in the Texas-Mexico region and beyond. The funding is intended as seed money to enhance collaborative research and develop new knowledge with the potential to secure additional support from other funding agencies. ConTex Awardees have included 74 institutions of higher education and research centers in Mexico and 13 UT System institutions in Texas. The financial commitment from UT System and Conahcyt to the ConTex grants and scholarship programs for the past seven years has been over $20 million dollars.

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